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- This topic has 74 replies, 3 voices, and was last updated 6 years ago by hjbau.
November 13, 2016 at 6:12 am #330213
Several people here have mentioned that they watch this show, so is anyone interested in discussing it?
Feel free to bring up anything you think is interesting.
Here are some questions to kick off:
– What do you like about this show?
– Favourite season?
– Favourite character and why?
– Major themes that have jumped out at you and your opinion of how well they’ve been handled.[adrotate group="5"]November 13, 2016 at 6:12 pm #330225
What I like most about The 100 is that it defied my expectations. I am one of those viewers who avoided it because the promos and snippets made me believe that it would be about one thing–teenage angst in the middle of some sort of crisis, full of all the tropes and cliche characters you can imagine. I genuinely love the CW but they do stick pretty firmly in their wheelhouse. I imagined Clarke as a “heroine” who has traits pulled from Buffy, Katniss and Bella Swan–complete with the exasperating love triangle with two guys (lolz, this statement and the reality of the show) and that the conflict the world was under would fall into the vague “humans destroyed the world for reasons that are never fully explained and it’s really only important to know that your heroine will save it.”
Boy, was I wrong.
There are so many ways that the 100 breaks those expectations. Yes, Clarke has some of the same traits as previous CW/teen inspired heroines but it’s so much more…visceral in her case, if that makes sense. This isn’t a game and Clarke isn’t destined as a Savior. In fact one of the smartest moves the show made in recent season was to avoid having Clarke be Lexa’s clear inheritor of the Commander chip. Lexa didn’t die to serve Clarke’s ascension to, what amounts to, godhood. Clarke actually goes and tries to give it to someone else and it’s only under a no win scenario that she’s forced to take the chip and then beats it at its own game. I also think that Clarke’s body count is likely higher than Buffy and Katniss’s combined. The events of Mount Weather are proof alone and while there’s inner conflict over those choices, it’s also made clear that in these cases, Clarke doesn’t have much of a choice. Her people have to be put before others and what helps serve this theme is that the world building on the 100 is so strong. I get how this world works–it’s one of constant war and bloodshed and differing groups who have different outlooks on life even though, historically, they are the same people. It has its own language (such a smart move on the part of the writers!) and groups who have a very clear philosophy (jus drein, jus daun) that they actually act on; the way the world impacts every character is so nuanced and compelling. Take Octavia–now there’s a CW cliche if ever there was one, at least at first. She’s the dangerous girl; she’s sexy and snarky and a bit too bold for brass but also clearly falls into the “not the protagonist and not the heroine” box. Octavia could have been just the sidekick, following everyone, never really any help except as a foil for the heroine, Clarke. Instead, the writers made her a living breathing person who negotiates her own identity in light of interactions with the people of the earth, like Lincoln (RIP). Instead she becomes one of the more forward thinking characters on the show, trying to find a fragile peace in a world that is all about conflict and war. Actually, now that I’m talking this all out, The 100 has done such a superb job with all their female characters, from Clarke to Octavia to Raven to Abby to Lexa.
Which brings me to…Clexa. I feel like you can’t really talk about The 100 without bringing up Clexa and, invariably, the “bury your gay” trope. I don’t honestly know how to talk about it and it doesn’t help that around the same time Clexa became canon (and then uncanon by virtue of mortality) OUAT did their own hamfisted, token LGBT relationship and the comparison is so ripe for the picking. How to actually develop an LGBT relationship vs how to never ever write one! On the one hand, I think killing Lexa made sense in terms of the world (constant death and conflict) and in terms of the show’s mythology (we had to learn more about the chip, ALIE, and Becca) and sadly a lot of that meant Lexa had to die for those themes and that story to progress. However, the timing of it–literally moments after Clexa became very real, very raw, and very romantic on screen–was shocking (and maybe it was suppose to be because, again, one of the bigger themes of the show is that peace is a tiny moment before the next moment of war) and unsettling because of the number of times all the other hetero characters have been put into harm’s way and lived to tell the tale, but Lexa–a warrior’s warrior–was killed in a super fast moment that wasn’t even about battle. I still can’t decide if it was a misstep on the part of the writers (and they may have had their hands tied due to the actress’s role on Fear the Walking Dead) but if one good thing did come out of Lexa’s death, it’s that the bury your gay trope is being talked about by more than the insiders of the LGBT community and, hopefully, progress is going to be made. (and yes, I recognize the horribleness of saying that lots of gay characters had to die in order for progress to be made…)
While S4 was really strong on a mythology front (and so eerily reminiscent of Battlestar Galactica, down to the bot in a red dress) there were some issues for me and pretty much all of them go by the name of Bellamy. First, I like Bellamy–really I do. I think he’s a perfect equal to Clarke (and by extension, Lexa) and his story for the first few seasons was compelling, especially as he moved from “dude bro” to “troubled but sympathetic hero” largely due to his relationship with Octavia, a sister not a lover! However, in the most recent season, I wanted to hit him upside the head several times. It doesn’t help that his main conflict this season, and so much of his impetus, was rather ill defined because the relationship that *ahem* blew up was kept off screen until the beginning of the season, only to end in the same moment of its reveal. Now, had it been Octavia who died (for instance) and that death caused Bellamy to go off the rails and join forces with someone like Pike, then that makes total sense. So much of Bellamy’s character is about protecting his sister and often times his inability to do so. But because the relationship was so underdeveloped, it only made Bellamy look stupid and best and unhinged at worst.
I’m honestly not sure what to expect moving forward. I know there is a huge “save the world” conflict that arose at the end of last season and that’s going to be the main thrust of this upcoming season but I don’t know how it plays out. And this it to the show’s credit. I don’t want the 100 to feel predictable because like I already said, one thing that really sells it is how it broke a lot of the ready formed cliches."He was a lot of things to me" "The only conclusion was love"November 14, 2016 at 6:59 am #330304
I am one of those viewers who avoided it because the promos and snippets made me believe that it would be about one thing–teenage angst in the middle of some sort of crisis, full of all the tropes and cliche characters you can imagine. I genuinely love the CW but they do stick pretty firmly in their wheelhouse. I imagined Clarke as a “heroine” who has traits pulled from Buffy, Katniss and Bella Swan–complete with the exasperating love triangle with two guys (lolz, this statement and the reality of the show) and that the conflict the world was under would fall into the vague “humans destroyed the world for reasons that are never fully explained and it’s really only important to know that your heroine will save it.”
I first heard about ‘The 100’ when outrage was pouring out of social media over Lexa’s death. I’m not even on social media and I still heard about it. At first, I presumed it was a cut and dried case of the showrunners being jerks (OUAT has desensitised me to that), so I wasn’t too interested. But I kept hearing about it and eventually the to-do piqued my curiosity. Plus, it was on Netflix, so I thought, “Why not?”
I liked it straightaway. The writing was strong, the stakes were high and it subverted expectations at every turn. A male lead bad-boy whose primary relationship was with…not a lover, but a sister! A female technical genius. A little girl who was a murderer. The show was also wonderfully thought provoking on issues of morality when survival is at stake.
My favourite season is probably S2. If I had to break it down, I’d say it was the second half of S2, the first half of S3 and the first half of S1. The AI storyline didn’t work for me. It was kind of a cool concept, but some parts didn’t make sense. Why weren’t the grounders more technologically advanced if Becca the genius was their first commander? Why didn’t the chip impact scientific knowledge to the commander? For me, the show is at its best when the sci-fi aspects are part of the background and the focus is on character dynamics when negotiating impossible situations. I hope S4 returns to this.
Which brings me to…Clexa. I feel like you can’t really talk about The 100 without bringing up Clexa and, invariably, the “bury your gay” trope.
Very true. I would go further to suggest that this may well be The 100’s lasting legacy, which is bittersweet. Bitter because it’s a good show and probably deserves to be remembered for more than perpetrating a horrible trope. Sweet because some good things (the Lexa Pledge, funds raised for at-risk LGBTQ teens) did emerge from the furore, which may have changed television’s treatment of queer characters for the better.
I have many more thoughts about…Clexa, Bellamy and other things. But I’ll write them out tomorrow when my brain has recharged.November 17, 2016 at 5:05 am #330538
Carrying on from my last post….
I’ll start off with Clexa. Clexa was a thing of beauty. The writing was epic. The acting was epic. The slow burn was epic. No wonder people were heartbroken when it ended. From a story perspective, I don’t think Lexa needed to die. Her death did move the story along, but the writers could have found another way to do that. Jason Rothenberg said in an interview that he would have loved to have Alycia Debnam-Carey as a series regular. It all boiled down to the fact that she was leaving the show. That was the core problem, and sadly, there was no easy way around that. Either she died or disappeared into the wilderness. Whichever way they did it, Clexa had to end because Clark couldn’t have a relationship with someone who was offscreen.
Could they have avoided the ‘bury your gays’ trope? Yes. Could they have spared LGBTQ fans the pain? This is a tricky one. They could have avoided the brutal shock of killing her, but having her disappear and break up with Clarke would, I believe, have caused a different kind of heartbreak. Lexa was popular and she would have been sorely missed no matter what.
As for Bellamy, I have a different perspective. I agree that his motivation was ill defined. But I rationalised his actions as follows. Bellamy’s drive has always been to protect. It’s usually his sister, but his wanting to be a guard on the Ark indicated that it extended beyond that to his wider community. He has always had a propensity for violence. The final piece of the puzzle is Bellamy’s psychological state. Again, it’s not made explicit why he was so vulnerable when Pike got to him. We know that he felt abandoned by Clarke. Also, I don’t remember any of the hundred really supporting Bellamy after his girlfriend’s death. So I think the pieces are all there, but it shouldn’t have been left to fans’ imaginations to put them together. With better writing, Bellamy’s actions could have been made pretty convincing.
One thing I’m curious about is how this show will end. Guaranteed, it won’t be a happy ending, but will they really kill everyone off? That would surprise me. Besides, there’s bound to be a twist. I honestly don’t even have any theories at this point.November 17, 2016 at 2:31 pm #330542hjbauParticipant
I sort of have a love/hate for the 100. On one hand, it has a lot of good female characters, many LGBT characters, dystopian society, world building is good, love the language and how they build out the world with each season, the sky people, the grounders, mount weather, 12 nations, so on and so forth.
On the other hand, i think the writing is pretty much atrocious at times. Well before the death of Lexa, the show was overly violent which made no sense. The kids were lord of the flies in the first season and pretty much stupid to their deaths. The logic of what was going on in the arc in the first season never made any sense at all and still doesn’t. It is this weird thing. They have good enough actors. Interesting characters. Good world building. Decent costumes. But the plot is just like what, that makes no sense, from one moment to the next. Bellamy’s behavior made no sense in the last season at all. It is really hard for me to even dissect my problems with the show because it is just really badly written at almost every turn.
Now Clexa, first thing, the leader of the woods clan, Anya, was a character i really liked in the earlier seasons, and i never forgave the show for killing her. Then enters Lexa who easily became the best character on the show, but i could not force myself to be attached to because of the way they killed Anya. Then they killed her. They killed Lexa and it was, as someone on twitter wrote, as if superman slipped on a banana peel and died. Her death was so random and stupid and anti climactic. I kept hoping that they were going to put her body in a stasis pod or something that was left over from the crash of the other arcs, because if the actor needed to go off to kill zombies, they could have kept her character alive just in case. Alas, i think not.
The thing is that while i do think the writing on this show is really badly written at every turn, especially when it comes to the big things that happen. The deaths, some of the plots, the adult characters should all die, Clarke should just be accepted as the leader with Bellamy as her second by the sky crew, and just a whole lot of other like major weird plot things that happened. Besides all that. There are moments when this show has a scene that is so good that i just know what is going to happen because it is so good and so earned and so wonderful that you are just like yes, that was awesome, that was well done, that was a great game, that was well written, well acted and just good.
This show is never going to be great, in my opinion, and i do think it will only ever be remembered for killing Lexa, and i feel so sorry for all the people who started watching it because they heard about Clexa, but i do think that when it has those really amazing scenes, it is as good as any show can be.November 19, 2016 at 5:10 am #330584
This show is never going to be great, in my opinion, and i do think it will only ever be remembered for killing Lexa
Yes, when I checked out the ratings, I was surprised by how low they were. They weren’t much higher than OUAT in S4 and 5, even though the show is much better than recent seasons of OUAT. I think the problem is that nothing makes ‘The 100’ stand out from other dystopian teen dramas. Well, Clexa did, but Clexa is no more. But there’s nothing to pull you in; you only realise that it’s good after you start watching.
Anyway, here’s more grist for the discussion mill.
– Have you read Kass Morgan’s book or do you intend to? How does it compare to the show?
– ‘The 100’ gets many accolades for its diversity. Do you think it deserves them or did it actually fall short in its representation of LGBTQ and PoC characters?November 20, 2016 at 10:07 am #330590hjbauParticipant
I do think it deserves the accolades for the LGBT diversity. It is part of the show and it is not about whether or not it is accepted, it just is, and i like that. Also, the main character of the show is bisexual. Not just a random side character that is in one episode and never seen again, see Ouat.
I do think that it could do a better job with the racial diversity. It is certainly there, but i still think they could do better. Most of the main characters are white. I think they need to add a black main character amongst the kids. I think they are trying with the diversity, bringing in reoccurring characters and such, but could do better since it is supposed to be a futuristic post apocalyptic society that lived on an enclosed space ship for generations.December 14, 2016 at 5:28 pm #332178
Guys."He was a lot of things to me" "The only conclusion was love"February 18, 2017 at 9:06 pm #333337
Anyone interested in doing an episode by episode discussion of S4? I haven’t started watching it yet, and I’m trying to decide whether to watch it on a weekly basis or binge watch at a later date.February 18, 2017 at 10:02 pm #333339
I’ve been meaning to get over here to discuss S4.
So far, I really like it. I like that the story moved past the various factions (at least as that being the major part of the narrative) and has a clear focus on the world ending.
Octavia is epic. I mean…EPIC.
I’m not sure I’m up for an episode by episodes discussion but I’ll def pop in every other week or so to give thoughts if anyone else is watching"He was a lot of things to me" "The only conclusion was love"
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